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Houston residents are scrambling to weather the soaring cost of living as numbers show an increase the country hasn’t seen in 40 years

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) – Maria Campos has been using the services of the Bible Way Fellowship Food Pantry for about three years.

She said the past year has been particularly tough for her and her husband, who has a disability.

“It’s (really) difficult,” Campos told ABC13 through an interpreter. “You can’t fill your shopping cart because of the prices.”

Figures released Tuesday by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics show that the average cost of living in the United States rose 8.5% from March 2021 to March 2022. That average includes everything from the 48% rise in gasoline costs to the cost of electricity, which has risen 11% over the past 12 months.

“Their total annual budget has increased by 8.5%,” explained Dr. Christopher Clarke, economics professor at the University of Houston.

The Southwest Office of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics released specific numbers from Dallas one month and Houston the next.

This month included an update on Dallas, but Clarke said Houston’s numbers pretty accurately reflect the national uptick of 8.5%.

For example, the price of eating out at home has increased by 10% in the last 12 months. A $200 grocery bill last spring would cost you $220 today.

It’s a feeling the Bible Way Fellowship Food Pantry knows all too well.

“We went from maybe 100 families to 200 families per distribution,” said program director Tomeka Brewster. “There is a great need.”

Distributions at The Bible Way Fellowship Food Pantry at 9200 Frey are Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am to 11am.

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https://abc13.com/us-bureau-of-labor-statistics-consumer-price-index-report-cpi-today-inflation-data/11741940/ Houston residents are scrambling to weather the soaring cost of living as numbers show an increase the country hasn’t seen in 40 years

Dais Johnston

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